I have created this blog to attempt to help those with chronic pain and depression. Sisyphus was a mythological figure sentenced to roll a stone uphill for eternity. In this way, I intend to approach chronic pain and depression as constant foes that must be your constant focus. Photo courtesy http://akrockefeller.com/blog/tibetan-autonomy-a-futile-odyssey/
Wednesday, April 26, 2017
An open letter to my children
I have been talking a lot to my son about his nightmares, his anger issues he says he has (although I have seen far worse, have been far worse).
The following is a letter to him and my daughters about what I have come to understand, and explain, as caging and harnessing your demon.
From a young age, I remember feeling as though I could be possessed by something larger than myself. When I started wrestling, I met my demon for the first time.
When I say I have a demon, I don't mean this in the sense of the one on the Exorcist movie, although I would say manifestation of a 'demon' may be linked to what I am about to describe.
I also don't intend to dive into a discussion of the philosophical differences between western and eastern spirituality.
What I will say along these lines is that we, humans, are composed of dark and light. The two balance. They are meant to be together. For proof, look outside right now, then in 12 hours, look outside again. Light encompasses our human components of empathy, compassion, and arguably our sense of morality. Darkness encompasses creativity, passion, aggression.
We as humans are balanced when we feel and incorporate all of these components. We are starved emotionally, if we negate any of these components.
Darkness gets a bad rap here in western culture. If you look east, specifically to Asia, depictions of what I am describing above show up as yin-yang, and predominantly as dragons, who are fierce, wise beasts who thrive in darkness.
I learned that I could be a monster of an opponent, literally, when I let my inner demon out. I have never been someone you would pick out of a crowd and say 'yeah, that is the kid you want to stay away from because he is tallest, the most muscular, etc.' But I damn sure promise you that was the sentiment amongst many of my competitors after they got hold of me when I was in this mind state.
I imagined it was a large gorilla named 'Mighty Joe Young'. Seriously. I even drew pictures of it. Although I didn't have any idea that what I was doing was controlling this through meditation and visualization, I would draw pictures of my gorilla being enclosed within a four cornered brick wall. And when he had to come out, he would shatter the wall and take me over.
I realize now that Mighty Joe was more appropriately named 'ego', after reading Eckhart Tolle. The true manifestation of the parts of myself that were at times, terrible to assume, but at opportune times, an unstoppable force. This has also been portrayed as Dr. Jeckyll and Mr. Hyde, and Dr. Banner and the Incredible Hulk.
I want for my children not to be afraid of this. It is powerful. What you must learn to do is first, name your demon and know it. Don't befriend it, but know its power. Don't allow it to outsmart you and trick you into getting angry when you shouldn't. Visually put your demon in a cage, wall, or some other similar room so that it can be controlled. And lastly and most importantly, when duty calls, and your demon busts out, which it will, harness it. Jump on its back and ride it into battle. Become one with it for the time necessary to destroy whatever opposition or tasks lies in front of you.
This will seem very abstract to you now, but you must seek a path of wisdom, your own path, through meditation and visualization, of doing what I describe. If you do this, you will be an unstoppable force yourself. You will shatter records, win championships, and frighten opponents into submission. Don't feel bad for this, or guilty. Self-defamation runs strong in our blood and you must learn to purge that out and stand tall and proud. When you go to war, you go to kill. When the war is over, you must become light again. War will find you in short order, and you must learn to balance your darkness and your light to realize your full potential.